Equity Theory (Walster incl. case study by van Yperen and Buunk )

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  • Created by: Simon_Q
  • Created on: 02-06-14 19:30

This theory agrees that people weigh up the rewards and the costs within relationships. It does, however, argue that people also have an expectation that all relationships should be equal. According to the theory, both partners should be keeping an eye on what each other is putting in and getting out of the relationship.

If what is being put in and received by both partners is roughly equal. They are more likely to feel reasonably satisfied by their relationship. However, if it unequal then the relationship will be experienced as inequitable and will lead to problems arising in the relationship.

If the relationship is relativity short term (e.g. a couple of months) then one partner may simply end the relationship but this is less likely if the couple have been together for a long time as they will have invested a lot more in the relationship (e.g. time, money etc.) This may motivate them to repair the


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